Idelaida Rodriguez, a 62-year-old teacher from the district of 10 de Octubre, a municipality in southern Havana, spent six days in hospital after getting infected with dengue.
“It was a nightmarish experience,” she said. “I had a fever and abdominal pain. I thought I would die.”
Like her, thousands of Cubans stay alert amid rising dengue cases across 11 of the country’s 15 provinces due to the rainy season.
Having recovered from the mosquito-borne disease, Rodriguez stepped up preventive measures to minimize the risk of contagion with the virus to her relatives at home.
Residents nationwide are taking actions to remove stagnant water from potential mosquito breeding habitats in communities and neighborhoods.
“We all must do our part to reduce the spread of the disease,” Havana resident Ruben Lopez told Xinhua, noting that vector control at workplaces is also fundamental to keeping dengue transmission in Cuba at bay.
Meanwhile, health authorities have instructed patients with dengue to go to hospitals if they do not feel fine.
Coordinated actions at the grassroots level will help tackle the dengue outbreak in the Caribbean country, Cuban nurse Zadys Hernandez told Xinhua.
“No one wants the epidemiological situation of the country to get worse amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said. “The dengue outbreak is beatable with the strict fulfillment of health protocols.”
According to the Cuban government, the country has reported over 3,000 dengue cases this year.
The country’s capital of Havana continues to register the highest number of dengue cases, followed by the provinces of Holguin, Guantanamo, Camaguey, and Isle of Youth Special Municipality.
Health Minister Jose Angel Portal Miranda said that the rainy season makes dengue vector control in Cuba more complex.
“Epidemiological surveillance, timely admission, proper medical treatment, and joint work in potential high-risk areas are paramount priorities in addressing the outbreak,” he added. ■